Keith Perry leads Rod Smith in cash-on-hand in SD 8 race

Keith Perry Rod Smith

Between them, Democrat Rod Smith and Republican Keith Perry have raised over a million dollars in their quests to win Senate District 8.

Both men have enjoyed support from their state parties. And their total money raised is pretty similar.

Smith actually leads Perry, barely, in terms of hard money raised: $539,570 for Smith to $537,997 for Perry.

However, Perry does lead in an important category: cash-on-hand.

As of Oct. 7, Smith had just under $53,000 on hand; Perry had just under $73,000 on hand.

The cash-on-hand advantage flipped toward Perry after a week in which Smith raised $26,125 and spent just over $113,000, with a third week of aggressive TV buys in the Gainesville-centric district.

In that same week, from Oct. 1 to Oct. 7, Perry raised $65,025 and spent $49,604.

Of that haul, $25,000 came from the Republican Party of Florida.

A dozen contributions, in $500 and $1,000 chunks, came from developers from throughout the state.

Miami’s Fontainebleau resort gave Perry $1,000, the maximum contribution for state races.

And so did a subsidiary of the R.J. Reynolds tobacco corporation.

Of Perry’s $49,604 spend, a relatively small fraction of it — roughly $11,000 — went to cable and Gainesville/Ocala market TV buys.

Smith has had ad buys in the Jacksonville media market; Perry has eschewed these.

Worth noting: Perry did spend $24,100 for a “social media program” during the most recent reporting period.

Of all the races in Northeast Florida, the Perry/Smith scrum in SD 8 is one that will be watched until the end. The money raised by the candidates and the resources poured in by the state parties suggest neither side is willing to accept a loss.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


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